Monday, November 9, 2009

Book Review : The Good Women of China by Xinran

The Good Women of China is a memoir relating the stories the author heard while hosting her radio show called ‘Words on the Night Breeze’ for Radio Nanjing in China. The program started in 1990 and it run for seven years. Xinran hosted the daily program in which she discussed women’s lives and invited women to call in and talk about themselves. The program became popular all over China for its honest revelation of Chinese women’s thoughts and experiences that took place both during and after the Cultural Revolution when Chairman Mao and Communism ruled the land.

Xinran received over two hundred letters a day from women who wanted to tell her their stories. Later, she embarked on a journey to discover and collect the stories of Chinese women. Xinran interviewed them on what it meant to be female in modern China. The women opened up to Xinran and they speak honestly about their lives, their roles as wives, mothers, daughters, secretaries and escorts. Most of the stories presented in this book tell about suffering which includes sexual abuse, ill-treatment of women, separation of parents and children and suppression of human emotion. The book gently tells us the pain and heartbreak women in China have to accept and endure in their everyday lives.

Among others, it tells about a girl who was sexually abused by her father. She escaped him by making herself ill until she slowly dies of blood poisoning in a hospital. Xinran also heard a confession by a student who admits that many university students from poor background act as escorts to businessmen for money and attention. However, they are left frustrated as they cannot find the love they are searching for.

One of the many letters Xinran received was from a peasant boy describing the plight of a 12-year-old girl, kidnapped and sold into marriage. To prevent her from fleeing, her elderly husband keeps her in chains. The boy asks Xinran’s help, but when she calls the police they shrug and tell her it is a common occurrence. The police however, seeing Xinran’s determination, decided to help her. In the end, the girl was set free and returned to her worried parents on the other side of the country. However, Xinran was not praised for her efforts. Instead, she was criticized for troubling the police and stirring up the people.

Another story came from a woman who was forced into marriage. At a young age, she joined the Communist Party, determined to shape the future of China. Without her knowledge, the party married her off to one of the senior officers. Since then, she was trapped in an emotionless political marriage, like many others. Her two children were separated from her soon after they were born and sent to the army nursery.

This shocking collection of stories offers a significant insight into the lives of Chinese women. Xinran has given a voice to many women who were unable to use their own voices to tell their plight.

The Good Women of China was published in 2002 and has been translated into over thirty languages.

This sad but inspiring read is available at Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library, Main Campus. Call No: 305.420951 XIN.

About the author:
Xinran was born in Bejing in 1958. She began working for Chinese Radio in late 1980s and went on to become one of China’s most successful journalists. She moved to London in 1997 where she started writing The Good Women of China. Xinran also authored Sky Burial, What the Chinese don’t eat, Miss Chopsticks and China witness: voices from a silent generation. Xinran now lives in London.

Reviewed by Irma Indayu Omar, Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library, Subang Jaya.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Latest Updates for CAL Past Year Examination Papers. Now available June 2009 exam papers

Dear Students and Staff,

Latest Updates : June 2009 CAL Past Year Examination Papers has been added to the Taylor’s Library Website’s online resources. Currently we have available CAL papers from year 2002 to June 2009 for all 14 subjects. We hope that this resource would prove useful for ease of access to the CAL past year papers.

To access the CAL Past Year Examination papers from the Library Website
1. Go to Taylor’s Libraries:
2. Go to Library Resources section and click on the "More" link
3. Click on "Past Examination Papers" link on the left side of the screen
4. Click on the “Pre-U Studies” link
5. Click on “Cambridge A-Levels” and you will see the 14 CAL subjects which you can choose from.
6. Click on the subject of your choice, followed by the year and month

Thank you.

Library Management

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Trial E-Journals : 13 Hart Publishing Law E-Journals now Available until 1 January 2010. It can be accessed from years 2007 - current

We are pleased to announce that 13 Law E-journals published by Hart Publishing through IngentaConnect are currently available for your trial and access until 1 January 2010. The years accessible for each e-journal are from 2007 – current. The 13 Law E-journal titles are

  • European Competition Journal

  • European Law Reports

  • Journal of Corporate Law Studies

  • Journal of Media Law

  • Journal of Private International Law

  • Judicial Review

  • King's Law Journal

  • Law and Financial Markets Review

  • Law and Humanities

  • Law, Innovation and Technology

  • Legal Ethics

  • Legisprudence

  • Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal

The trial period for this trial database is until 1 January 2009. Your feedback on this trial database is greatly appreciated. Please use the online survey given for this database.

You may access the 13 Law E-journals on the E-journals page using the following steps:

  1. Go to

  2. Go to the “Library Resources” section and click on the “More” link,

  3. At the left hand side of the screen, click on the “E-journals” link

  4. Select the e-journal under the title Hart Publishing ( as shown in the diagram below ) which you wish to try out (For remote access or from home, please use your computer network login and password. Campus access does not require any username and password)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Book Review : Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom

Morrie Schwartz was a college professor in philosophy at Brandeis University for many years. One of his students in the 1970's was Mitch Albom. Morrie and Mitch became good friends over those years. Then Mitch graduated and went on with his life, too busy to keep in contact with his professor.

Almost twenty years later, Mitch is now a sports newscaster and writer. He and his wife are part of America's fast lane of life, doing well and striving for yet more. Then he watches Nightline one night. Ted Koppel is interviewing Morrie. And Mitch is surprised to discover Morrie is dying. Morrie is dying from Lou Gehrig's disease, a crippling illness that diminished his activities daily. When in college, Mitch met with Morrie on Tuesdays. So he, takes the initiative to reconnect with his long lost friend.

Morrie is delighted to hear from Mitch again, and immediately invites him to visit. Thus begins a fourteen week meet, every Tuesday, visit and life lesson. Morrie tells Mitch that in life you have to find out what is important to you, and not let society make those choices for you. Mitch realized that society puts a value on stuff that shimmers and glistens, not on the things that really matter. Morrie is able to take a look at life not only from the philosophical view he has taught over the years, but now also from the "end of life" viewpoint. He is a peace with himself and can share that peace and knowledge with Mitch and the others around him. This made Mitch see how Morrie was a man of great wisdom and valued the little thing in life. He taught Mitch so much, and allowed him to see the things that usually go unnoticed.

This book is a collaboration between Morrie and Mitch. They taped their visits each time Mitch visited. They discussed the big questions of life (what is love, living, death, marriage, a relationship) to the small ones (what's for lunch, how's your wife, how's your son, and the war in Bosnia). Mitch rediscovered the relationship that had never been broken. Morrie rediscovered his old friend. Also, Morrie was able to use this time to do what he loved, teach.

This book is a wonderful chronicling of friendship and life questions. Mitch is able to portray Morrie so that the professor once again is alive (and dying) for the reader.

This beautiful little book will remind you of the importance of counting your blessings daily and having the wisdom to honor life’s simplest pleasures no matter how busy your life becomes.

Mitch Albom is the author of the international bestseller The Five People You Meet in Heaven as well as six other books. A nationally syndicated columinist for the Detroit Free Press and a nationally syndicated radio host for ABC and WJR-AM, Albom has, for over a decade, been named top sports columnist in the nation by the Sports Editors of America, the highest honor in the field. A panelist on ESPN’s Sports Reporters, Albom also regularly serves as a commentator for that network. He serves on numerous charitable boards and has founded two charities in metropolitan Detroit : The Dream Fund, which help under-privileged youth study the arts, and A Time to Help, a monthly volunteer program. He lives with his wife, Janine, in Michigan.

Reviewed by Komathi Somasundaram, Taylor’s College Sri Hartamas Library.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

CAL Past Year Examination Papers now available online on Taylor's Library Website

Dear Students and Staff,

In line with meeting your needs for online resources, we are pleased to announce that we have the digitized version of the Cambridge A-Levels (CAL) Past Year Examination papers for 2002 – 2008 now available on the Taylor’s Library Website.

Past Year papers are now available for all 14 subjects namely :

  • Accounting
  • Biology
  • Business Studies
  • Chemistry
  • Computing
  • Economics
  • Further Mathematics
  • Law
  • Literature in English
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Thinking Skills

To access the CAL Past Year Examination papers from the Library Website :

1. Go to Taylor’s Libraries:

2. Go to Library Resources section and click on the "More" link

3. Click on "Past Examination Papers" link on the left side of the screen

4. Click on the “Pre-U Studies” link

5. Click on “Cambridge A-Levels” and you will see the 14 CAL subjects which you can choose from.

6. Click on the subject of your choice, followed by the year and month

With the past year papers available online, access is only a click away.

Thank you.

Library Management

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Past Year Examination Papers now available from 3 schools

Now online, the past year examination papers for the various schools from as early as year 2006 to 2009. More online past year examination papers on the way.

  • School of Architecture, Building and Design
  • School of Communication
  • School of Communication and Information Technology

Please click here to go to past year examination papers main page

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Institution of Engineering and Technology's (IET) Digital Library and InspecDirect now Available as Trial Databases

IET Digital Library. The Institution of Engineering and Technology was formed by the joining together of two great institutions; the IEE (Institution of Electrical Engineers) and the IIE (The Institution of Incorporated Engineers). The IET is the inheritor of the IEE Digital Library service. The IET Digital Library holds more than 90,000 technical papers from all IET journals, magazines, conference publications and seminar digests. Highly cited journals such as Electronics Letters are available alongside 20 IET Research Journal titles, the IET's member magazine Engineering & Technology, plus seminar digests and conference publications. Also available on the IET Digital Library is the IET's online only journal Micro & Nano Letters.

IET InspecDirect will give you comprehensive coverage of global scientific and engineering literature, essential for all your research and academic projects.

These two trial databases will be available until 30 August 2009. Your feedback on the databases is greatly appreciated. Please use the online surveys given as links in the trial databases page.

To access IET Digital Library or IET InspecDirect
  1. Go to Taylor’s Libraries:
  2. Go to Library Resources section and click on the "More" link.
  3. Click on Trial Database link at the left hand side of the screen

  4. Click on IET Digital Library or IET InspecDirect

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Book Review : The Ugly Duckling Goes to Work: wisdom for the workplace from the classic tales of Hans Christian Andersen By Mette Norgaard

The stories in this book offer a fun and lighthearted way to address work and personal issues. The book is organized into six independent chapters, each based on a fairy tale. We can choose to read the book in sequence or simply start with the one that interests us the most. After each chapter there is a summary of “Something to think about” and another called “Something to talk to your colleagues about”. In addition to the concise summaries and analysis, the lessons from these stories will inspire reader to bring more meaning, more energy and more joy to their work, thus creating a meaningful work life.

--The Emperor’s New Clothes: This story mocks snobbery and shows us how our fear and ego can drive us to foolishness. Clad in our power suits, we become more concerned with our image rather than ourselves. The corporate culture fuels us to be blind to self-awareness and personal beliefs and encourages us into accepting only what executive management would find meritorious. Somehow we will learn to reclaim our own agenda by using two terrific fool-detectors: self-awareness and candid conversations.

--The Ugly Duckling’s story of rejection and growth allows us to realize that – when we heed our longing, we grow into our swanlike nature. Many of us in the workplace can relate well to the feeling of being discriminated against for not fitting the mold. Yet, it is within our power to choose to leave bitterness behind and to uproot negativism from our system. Once this is accomplished, we can begin to assert ourselves in order to find out where we belong and how we can best fulfill our purpose.

--The Dung Beetle’s self-absorption and status driven creature teach us that an honest assessment of our strengths and weakness is the first thing that permits us to get pass frustrations and propels us to succeed. This does not mean that we should suppress our faith in our competencies. In contrast, the free-agent reality is that in the global market, the proliferation of downsizing and off-shoring should encourage us to grow and learn continuously. It is self-deception to hold on to fantasies of lifetime employment and linear career paths, feeling as if the world owes us something. Freedom is a wonderful thing and as free agents, our only security is in establishing a strong professional identity from mastery and building relationships.

--The Nisse at the Grocer’s is a tale of two tensions: between practicality and idealism, action and contemplation, standard of living and quality of life. A good book, a moving film, a motivational speech, or a weekend trip can make us want to be writers, artists, entrepreneurs. While it is true that the grocer provides us with porridge with a large lump of butter, it is the power of truth, courage, compassion and beauty that makes us creative and happy. Inspiration, however, is oftentimes short-lived, as one realizes that it may not keep a roof over one’s head. Each of us is a work in progress, and the story displays how the confused Nisse has managed to keep a balance. The more you integrate, the wiser you will be.

--The Fir Tree is a tragic tale of one has never really lived. The little tree was in a hurry to grow up and anxious to shine so soon. It lost its roots even before it was cut down. The fundamental to a happy life is the ability to be aware of and appreciate the moment. Oftentimes through, we defer our realizations and pleasure until the next target is met and until the next deadline is over. The question is not “Should we stop making plans?” the question is “How often do you postpone your life?” Savor the moment. Seize the day.

--The Nightingle awakens at it enchants. It tells of a plain little bird that touches the soul with its song, deriving its strength from nature, meaning, and freedom. It comforts both fisherman and Emperor, an equalizer. It does not concern itself with gold slippers, titles and applause from the Emperor’s court, since fulfillment is a reward on its own. The tales teaches us to push beyond mere perfunctory performances and reach our full potential.

This book is available at Main Campus and Subang Square Library. The call number is 650.1 NOR.

About the author:
Dr. Mette Norgaard, M.B.A., Ph.D., is a speaker on personal leadership and an executive coach and strategy consultant who has worked with senior leaders from organizations such as Microsoft, Intel, Coca Cola, General Electric, and Daimler Chrysler. Prior to starting her own consulting business, she was a senior consultant at the FranklinCovey Company. In her work with companies, her passion is to help people be authentic and alive in their work, and to create organizations that engage people’s best thinking, best energy, and best performances.

Born and raised in Denmark, Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales were an integral part of her upbringing. As she grew older and began to study Andersen scholars she discovered that there was a clear pattern to Andersen writings. His heroes were authentic, congruent, true and real; his villains were narrow-minded, self-satisfied, proud and smug; and his hope for people was that they would enjoy every moment and grow into person they were meant to be. A philosophy that was close to Dr. Norgaard’s own heart.

Reviewed by Siti Hafizah Manap, Librarian, Subang Square Library

Friday, June 26, 2009

Taylor's Library Quiz

Please try out our Taylor's Library Quiz for our Orientation and Information Skills classes for new pre-university and degree students.

Friday, June 19, 2009

A Very Warm Welcome to Rajender Singh

The library would like to give a very warm welcome to our latest member, Rajender Singh A/L Chanan Singh. He joined us as Library Assistant at Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library II, Subang Square on June 1st, 2009.

Prior to joining Taylor’s, Rajender was working in Unity College and Sunway University College. He also has experienced in customer service.

We hope Rajender will enjoy working with us and contribute to the growth of the library.

Monday, June 15, 2009

McGraw-Hill's AccessMedicine and AccessPharmacy now Available as Trial Databases

McGraw-Hill's AccessMedicine is an innovative online resource that provides students, residents, clinicians, researchers, and all health professionals with access to more than 50 medical titles from the best minds in medicine, updated content, thousands of images and illustrations, interactive self-assessment, case files, diagnostic tools, a comprehensive search platform, and the ability to download content to a mobile device.

Updated frequently and expanded continuously by world-renowned physicians, AccessMedicine provides fast, direct access to the information necessary for completing evaluations, diagnoses, and case management decisions, as well as for pursuing research, medical education, or self-assessment and board review.

McGraw-Hill's AccessPharmacy is an online curricular resource designed to meet the changing demands of pharmacy education. A flexible resource, AccessPharmacy allows students to select a core curriculum topic, browse by organ system, review textbooks, or search across leading pharmacy online references.
These two trial databases will be available until 17 July 2009. Your feedback on the databases is greatly appreciated. Please use the online surveys given as links in the trial databases page

To access McGraw-Hill's AccessMedicine or McGraw-Hill's AccessPharmacy
  1. Go to Taylor’s Libraries:
  2. Go to Library Resources section and click on the "More" link.
  3. Click on Trial Database link at the left hand side of the screen
  4. Click on McGraw-Hill's AccessMedicine or McGraw-Hill's AccessPharmacy

Friday, June 12, 2009

As I was Passing by Adibah Amin

As I was Passing I and II are books which I would recommend everyone to read. Put in an amusing anecdotes format, readers will be enthralled by the way the author, Adibah Amin has crafted her book with so much warmth, love and understanding. She used her family, friends and neighbors as subjects for her books to sum up the heart and soul of Malaysian lifestyle and idiosyncrasies. As I Was Passing I and II are compilations of Adibah’s column of the same name published in The New Straits Times in the 1970s and 1980s under her pen name, Sri Delima. Relevant today as it was then, Adibah prose and writings makes an interesting read. She analyzed the Malaysian culture with a humorous angle, always adding a light twist to her musings. The reader will thus realize that she is affectionately appreciative of the events and experiences that shape Malaysian life.

With such books, there is usually a moral behind the stories and here, we can find that characteristic. The reader may not quite realize it until they came to the end of the story. At this point, most will laugh heartily over it. She crafted the stories to encompass the emotions and beliefs of her subject never in a heavy-handed manner but always in a light touch, not to offend the reader.

We can look at ourselves and laugh at all of our Malaysia idiosyncrasies. In fact, laughter and at times, tears are never far away when I read the many stories presented in these books.

One of the stories that really touched me in this book is ‘Memories and songs in the night’ where she described the magic of Christmas and how Malaysians of all races celebrate this festival in their own way. She looked back at the memories of Christmas that she had when she was young, singing Christmas songs with an Eurasian family next door on Christmas night. This reminds me of how Malaysian of all races share the joy of any festival. Malaysia with it wide myriad of cultures brings us all together in peace and harmony.

Another story which reminds me of my dad and his loves for birds is ‘The day Pak Mat Merbuk met Ujang the Untameable’. My father used to tell me stories about his children days when he reared birds after trapping them. In this story, Pat Mat Merbuk, a person who trained birds, heard the sweet whistling of Ujang, a wild merbuk and caught him to be reared to become a champion singer. How he doted on the bird! He gave Ujang a special powder to make its singing more spectacular. He refused to sell the bird to anyone for any amount of money. However Pat Mat Merbuk started to realized that nothing could beat the singing of Ujang when he was free in the wilds. Finally, he set Ujang free. When asked what made him do what he did, Pat Mat Merbuk smiled and quoted this old pantun:

Indah bunga bakawali,
Diusik dipetik jangan;
Hati loba merangkuli,
Hati kasih melepaskan.

(Beautiful is the bakawali flower,
Do not touch, do not pluck;
The covetous heart clutches,
The loving heart lets go.)

Below are my favorites stories in the book:
Malaysian Time
Tourist Notions
Getting up for sahur
The mystery of Thaipusam
Dear Monster revisited
Memories and songs in the night
The day Pak Mat Merbuk met Ujang the Untameable
Marital fighting, Malaysian Style

This interesting and funny read is available at Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library, Main Campus. The call number is 959.5 ADI.

About the Author
Adibah Amin, born in 1936 is an academician, a linguist and a writer in both Bahasa Melayu and English. She also has acted in a few Malay films in the 80s. She has written three Malay novels, Bangsawan Tulen, Seroja Masih di Kolam and Tempat Jatuh Lagi Dikenang. Seroja Masih di Kolam was translated to Japanese in 1986 with the title Suroyja No Hana Wa Mada Ike Ni. She also has written nearly 200 radio dramas, numerous short stories and an English novel, The End of the Rainbow.

Reviewed by Librarian, Belinda Sta Maria, Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library, Main Campus.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Research Starters - Sociology now Available as an Online Database

Research Starters™ - Sociology provides students with a solid foundation for their research and assignments, as well as overview information on topics relevant to their studies. Comprehensive summaries of discipline-specific topics help students to grasp the broad outlines of a subject, realize its real world applications, critically engage it, and locate sources for advanced research. Articles average 3,000 words, providing concise yet more in-depth content than most textbook or encyclopedia entries. This online database is on trial until June 2010.
To access Research Starters - Sociology

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

'Chat with the Librarian' - New Reference Service

The latest feature in the Library Website is ‘Chat with the Librarian’. We are using Meebo, an instant messaging software. With Meebo, staff and students can interact at real time with a librarian. Get immediate answers to your questions, obtain clarifications and receive explanations on any matters related to the library.

‘Chat with the Librarian’ is available from Monday to Friday, 8.00 am to 4.00 pm. To access it, please go to the Library Website and select ‘Chat with the Librarian’ under Ask & Tell Us or just click at ‘Chat with the Librarian’ under Favorites.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Monk Who Sold his Ferrari by Robin S. Sharma

The monk who sold his Ferrari is a tale which provides an approach to living a simple life with greater balance, strength, courage and abundance of joy. The fable format is a refreshing change from the tiresome listing of all the good things we could do for ourselves but do not. It makes the message being conveyed linger in our minds. This well crafted story by Robin S. Sharma is the tale of Julian Mantle, a lawyer brought face to face with a spiritual crisis after having a heart attack and collapses in the courtroom. Julian had worked day and night without caring about his mental and physical health. That helped him become a very rich and successful lawyer but took a toll on his health and mental state.

Julian had achieved everything most of us could ever want: professional success with a seven figure income, a grand mansion in a neighborhood inhabited by celebrities, a private jet, a summer home on a tropical island and his prized possession, a shiny red Ferrari parked in the center of his driveway.

Following his heart attack, he quit his law firm, sold all his property and embarks on a life-changing odyssey to India. During this journey he learns the value of time as the most important commodity and how to cherish relationships, develop joyful thoughts and live fully, one day at a time.

John, who is a friend as well as co-worker of Julian, narrates the story. Three years passed without any news from Julian. One day he paid a visit to John, who was now a cynical older lawyer. But Julian, in the past three years, had been miraculously transformed into a healthy man with physical vitality and spiritual strength.

Julian relates his experiences with Yogi Raman, the leader of the sages of Sivana and the person who taught Julian his secrets of a happy and fulfilling life. He narrates to John the fable that contained the seven virtues for a life abundant with inner peace, joy and a wealth of spiritual gifts. He tells John how to cultivate the mind and how to use setbacks for expanding knowledge of the self. He talks about setting and following our own purpose and teaches John the ancient art of self-leadership with techniques such as “do the things you fear” and “the 5 step method for attaining goals”. He describes techniques such as “the ancient rule of 20” and “the vow of silence”. He teaches how to focus on the priorities and thereby maintain a balance and simplify life. He gives examples that prove, will power is the essential virtue of a fully actualized life.

Julian teaches John the virtue of selflessness in serving others. He asks John to embrace the present and live in the present - “Now”, never to sacrifice happiness for achievements and to savor the journey of life and live each day as his last one. At the end he asks John to spread these secrets for the benefit of other people. For the reader who might be in the rat race for material success and money, this book might be food for thought.

The monk who sold his Ferrari is available at Taylor’s libraries. The call number is F SHA.

About the Author

Robin Sharma is one of the world’s leading experts on leadership and personal development. His books have been published in over 50 countries helping millions of people and organizations create extraordinary results. Robin is also a widely respected CEO advisor having worked with Fortune 500 CEOs and leaders all over the world on leadership, change management and high performance in business.

Robin is the founder of Sharma Leadership International Inc. a global training firm with a simple mission: to help people Lead without Title. In a recent independent survey of the world’s top leadership gurus by, Robin appeared in the top 10 with Tom Peters, Jack Welch and John Maxwell.

Reviewed by Komathi Somasundaram, Taylor’s College Sri Hartamas Library.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Book Review : The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

“For you a thousand times over!”

Those are the magic words that moved me to tears when reading The Kite Runner by Khalid Hosseini. Actually, The Kite Runner is the first English novel that I read, not taking into account the compulsory texts for English lessons during school days. I read most of this book while in the train, on my way to work and back. Reading The Kite Runner in that situation did not allow me to fully concentrate on it. Nevertheless, I feel like crying when I reached the last words of the novel, although I was fully aware that I was in a train packed with people. Those last words, repeated in the book at the right time, trigger the reader’s emotion.

Hassan first said those words to Amir when he helped Amir to run for his kite in a kite-fighting tournament in their hometown in Kabul. Hassan and Amir are the main characters in this novel and the story evolves around them. When Amir won the tournament, he was very proud to be able to prove to his Baba (father) that he is a capable person. That was the finest moment for Amir. He had won his Baba’s heart. He had melt down the ice barricade that separated him and his Baba for years since he was born. Ironically, that moment was also the worst moment of his relationship with Hassan, his servant, his long-life friend and his brother. Amir did not stand up and defend Hassan when he was sexually abuse by a bully who was also competing in the tournament. Later, Amir regretted himself and he carried the guilt to adulthood.

“There is a way to be good again”, the words of advice from Rahim Khan, a close friend of Amir’s Baba, brought Amir back to Afghanistan, to the fond memories of his Baba, Hassan, Ali and Rahim Khan. Amir was willing to leave his wife and a stable writing career in America for a while to go back to his home country. The words of Rahim Khan mould him to become the new Amir, leaving the old one who was always running from problems cowardly and let other people handle them. It was Hassan who had always done the problem-solving job for him. It was always Hassan, the boy whom Amir has betrayed, despite Hassan’s loyalty and love for him.
Amir’s departure from America back to Afghanistan created another drama in his life. He did it for the the sake of Hassan and redemption. When you pay for the price of redemption, the world will always give it back to you with a more worthy price. Amir finally received the price, when he could fly the kite again and win many people’s hearts. This time without betraying anyone.

The Kite Runner is available in Taylor's Libraries. The call number is F HOS.

About the Author
Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1965. He earned his MD in 1993 from University of California. His debut novel, The Kite Runner, was published in 2003. It is an international bestseller, selling more than 10 million copies worldwide. Khaled Hosseini is a Goodwill Envoy for the United Nation High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Reviewed by Haizir Othman, Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library III,
Leisure Commerce Square.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Self check available now in three campuses

Self check machines are now available in Main Campus Library, Leisure Commerce Square Library and Sri Hartamas Library. Staff and students are welcome to use them, especially when there is a long queue at the circulation counter.

The machine is easy to use with instructions displayed on the screen. Users need to scan their ID before proceeding to check out or borrow books. At the end of the transactions, please print receipt and keep as reference for the due dates. Users can also check their library account and renew books using these machines. Hopefully, this new facility will enhance the library service.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Very Warm Welcome to Pazmi and Siti Hafizah

We are pleased to welcome two new staff to the library. They are Md Pazmi Paijan and Siti Hafizah Manap. Both of them reported for duty on February 2, 2009.

Pazmi from Pulau Indah, is positioned as Library Assistant at the Main Campus library, Subang Jaya. Before joining Taylor’s, Pazmi was working as a Customer Relation Assistant and prior to that, he was a cashier clerk. Pazmi has a certificate in Information Technology.

Siti Hafizah Manap, a librarian, graduated from UiTM in 1992. She was previously attached with ASTRO Media Library & Information Services from July 1997 to January 2009 and The British Council Library as Assistant Librarian from October 1992 to June 1996. Her specializations are archiving of audio-visual materials and reference work. Siti Hafizah is placed at Subang Square library.

Farewell to Khirudin

Khirudin, our colleague bid us goodbye on January 30th, 2009. Khirudin was a Library Assistant at Main Campus Library, Subang Jaya. He joined us in February 2007. Khirudin has been a very helpful colleague to everyone at the library and never failed to cheer us up.

We miss him and wish him all the best in his future position at Berjaya School of Hospitality and Tourism library.

Khirudin receiving a farewell gift from Ms Susan Zachariah,

the Deputy Library Manager.

Khirudin with Main Campus Library staff.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A Very Warm Welcome to Mazura

The latest addition to Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong library is librarian, Mazura Samsuddin. She joined us on January 5th, 2009. Mazura, who hails from Perak, graduated from UiTM Shah Alam with a BSc in Information Studies (Information Systems Management) in 2003. Previously, she worked as Design Librarian for two years at an interior design company. She also has experienced in customer service while working in Berjaya Times Square. We welcome Mazura and hope that she will enjoy working with the team. Currently, Mazura is positioned at Sri Hartamas Library.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Book Review : Ideas That Changed the World by Felipe Fernandez-Armesto

Ideas That Changed the World
By Felipe Fernandez-Armesto
Publisher: Doring Kindersley, 400 pages
ISBN 0751344141
Call Number : 909 FER

Whenever I come to a blank in a form requesting my religion, I am tempted to write Deism. Unfortunately most people will not understand what it means. I did not know the word existed until I came across it in this book by Felipe Fernandez-Armesto (FFA). Well, Deism is the “belief in God not dependent on organized religion”. It originated back in 18th century Europe when Empiricism - the idea that “reality is observable and verifiable by sense-perception” - was emerging as a major trend and Sir Isaac Newton had just made key discoveries in the laws of mechanics. This filled people with confidence that the universe was as predictable as a clock and all knowledge was within grasp. Things did not turn out as expected, but the prevailing rationale was that if man could understand God through science and mathematics, why bother with religion?

FFA is Professor of Global Environmental History at Queen Mary, University of London. His book is basically an introduction to some of the thoughts and ideas that had guided our actions throughout history. Its pages are packed with information and thought-provoking illustrations. There are 7 sections covering ideas from 30,000 BC to the present 21st century. The topics explained include existentialism, pragmatism, godless humanism, scientific racism, anarchism, utilitarianism, romanticism, German, British, Chinese and Japanese superiority, chivalry, universal morality and regulating incest.

Why are ideas important? Well, they exert a tremendous influence on human behaviour as history has witnessed. The idea, for instance, that we could assume the power of our enemies by eating their flesh, encouraged cannibalism. The idea that strife is natural and conflicts are creative resulted in highly competitive yet cheerless societies - like a certain neighbouring state of ours. Darwin’s ideas about natural selection were used by some to justify racism and the extermination of “inferior” races like the Jews. The idea of a land promised by God to the Israelites became an excuse for the barbaric treatment of the Palestinians. Ideas offer possibilities on how things can be improved and yet produce frustration when hindered by other conflicting ideas. Ideas can destabilize when differing schools of thought clash.

The following is a sampling of the gems contained in this remarkably compact collection.

The Idea of Microscopic Life-forms
Many people held the idea (and many still do) that if life had not originated with God, it must have arisen from spontaneous generation. That is until Lorenzo Spallanzani proved that germs killed by heating could not re-appear in a sealed environment. The entire food industry was transformed by this discovery. So could life have appeared on earth – a closed system - without divine intervention?

The Idea of American Exceptionalism
Americans have always believed that their country is unique and blessed by God. The national psyche is exemplified by two beloved fictional characters. First, every American hero has to be an outsider like the Lone Ranger and has “got to do what a man has got to do”, including partaking in a little violence now and then. Second, Americans are inherently good-natured like Donald Duck and, despite constantly getting into all manner of trouble, are ultimately seeking the best for all concerned! FFA: “The same sort of self-righteousness and obedience to impulse makes American policy-makers bomb people from time to time – but always with good intentions.”

The Idea of a Weapon to End War
Did you know that Alfred Nobel, the guy who created those noble Nobel prizes, made his fortune from explosives and arms trafficking? His original intention was to promote the development of super-weapons. He reasoned that the only way to stop wars was to create weapons so terrible that no one would dare to start a fight! Alfred was apparently consumed by guilt after accidentally blowing up his own brother in an experiment!

The Idea of Unpredictability
Scientists have been trying for centuries to unveil the secrets of the Universe. They succeeded spectacularly in some ways, failed miserably in other ways. A good example of the latter is meteorology. No matter how much statistical data computers crunch, tomorrow’s weather cannot be predicted with certainty. The gulf between cause and effect appears to be so great as to be insurmountable. Chaos theory had a humbling effect. FFA: “The exposure of chaos looks like another nail in the coffin of “scientism” – yet more evidence that nature really is uncontrollable by human minds … Science seems to be self-undermined, and the faster its progress, the more questions emerge about its own competence. And the less faith most people have in it.”

This is a very well-written book and one that I recommend to all armchair philosophers.

Reviewed By : Richard Ooi, Projects and Facilities Management

Monday, January 5, 2009

A Very Warm Welcome to Sumathi

The library would like to give a very warm greeting to our latest member, Sumathi Sinnasamy. She joined us as Senior Library Assistant at Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library, Sri Hartamas on 15th December 2008. At the moment, Sumathi is attending training at Main Campus Library, Subang Jaya.

Sumathi states, “I would like to thank Ms. Sossamma George and Mr. Jaspal for giving me the opportunity to be part of the team. I will apply my current skill, knowledge and creativity to gain more experience in this new environment. I hope to learn more skills here and obtain valuable experience”.

We trust Sumathi will enjoy working with us and contribute to the growth of the library.

Ms. Yoong Suan Kui Bid Farewell

Ms Yoong Suan Kui, the library manager of Tan Sri Loy Hean Heong Library III, Leisure Commerce Square bid us farewell on December 5th, 2008. Ms. Yoong started her career at Taylor’s as Reference & Circulation Librarian in 2005

She graduated with a Bachelor degree in Social Sciences from University Malaya and a Masters degree in Library and Information Science from the same university. Prior to working in Taylor’s, Ms. Yoong has been working in a few academic libraries in Klang Valley.

Ms. Yoong has been a very dedicated staff, hard working and committed. She has contributed immensely to the growth of Leisure Commerce Library and also to all Taylor’s libraries.

At the moment, we hope Ms. Yoong and her family are already settled in their new life in Perth, Australia. We wish her all the best.

Do you know how to use the Self Check Machine to Borrow and Renew books?